By Lisa Erickson, MS, LMHC :
The caller says they went to my website and started to cry.
I have heard this reaction before. It isn’t because they read the page on addictions or the one on depression.
There is only one page that evokes this response. The caller has read about giftedness on my website. The information is new to them.
Understanding yourself as a gifted person can be compared to the coming out process for gays.
The analogy is not perfect: after all, gifted people don’t need to worry about personal safety, job security, discrimination and homophobia, or abandonment by family or friends because of their giftedness.
Gays, lesbians, bisexuals, and transgendered people do.
But there are useful parallels. Both gays and gifted people are invisible minorities.
Both gays and gifted people may come to this awareness at different points in life, and may have been unable to previously articulate the nature of their difference.
Both gays and gifted people are born and not made.
Both gayness and giftedness are fixed traits that last a lifetime.
> Continued in her article Coming out Gifted
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A few of many related articles:
Gifted, Talented, Misunderstood: 10 Misconceptions About Gifted Adults – In her article “10 Misconceptions About Gifted Adults”, Jane Macondo sheds some light on why gifted people can be baffled…and baffling.
Finding the Gems in the Rough: the mission to identify and serve the unknowing gifted – by Sara Yamtich. “Over the decades, education and resources for gifted youth have made significant contributions to the education and mental health fields. Many thinkers have shed light on not just the intellectual differences of the gifted, but on the unique personality traits and social-emotional needs of this population.
“And it’s been hugely liberating and beneficial to many youth, who with enough support, are empowered to achieve greatness in their lives and the world. However, we know that giftedness doesn’t go away as we reach adulthood.”
Brainpower and The Smart Gap – Psychologist Eric Maisel notes that every smart person experiences challenges, and lists fifteen of them that many people have in common, including: “Living in a society and a world that does more than disparage smartness, that actually silences smart people (because the power and privilege of leaders is undercut by smart people like you pointing out fraud, illogic, and injustice). Doing work day after day and year after year that fails to make real use of your brainpower…”
One of his related books: Why Smart People Hurt: A Guide for the Bright, the Sensitive, and the Creative.